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Algeria's opposition calls for independent group to run next year's elections

Algerian opposition parties, including both secular and Islamist groups, have signed a statement calling for April's presidential elections to be supervised by an independent commission.

Algerian elections are run by the Interior Ministry, which is headed by a presidential appointee. Opposition parties accuse the ministry of being partial to the ruling parties.

The statement signed late Monday called for a national commission independent from the government to organize and supervise the elections.

The ruling National Liberation Front, which took the lion's share of seats in May 2012 parliamentary elections, has nominated President Abdelaziz Bouteflika for a fourth term despite his fragile health.

Commissions including party representatives have always existed during elections but have never had the power to question the outcomes.